What did Black People Invent?

I looked at an amusing song from Family Guy, only to find people consistently crediting White people only for breakthroughs and inventions in the comments sections. So, I did a quick google search and compiled a short list of Black Inventors and activists who pioneered scientific and social changes through hard work. This is mostly a list of Black Americans who helped make scientific innovations.

Seriously people, are we still not beyond saying hip-hop and rap music are the only things that Black people and particularly Black Americans have contributed to apart from civil rights? This is the information age, you live in a democratic society, and you have google at your fingertips. Just google it and you’ll see how wrong such assumptions are.

I really try to point out the nonsense of such claims by saying people who claim that “white people invented x” are really trying to take credit for what other people did based on their own accident of birth of being born the same skin tone. But if you’re going to play that game, and since culture continues to in the US, then I suppose I’ll have to point out why this narrative is utterly stupid.

Below is the list of just a few Black inventors in history:

Elijah McCoy: Lubricant Cups for Trains which allowed them to go from one station to another without ever needing to stop for repairs.

Lewis Howard Latimer: Helped the team that invented the telephone by coming up with its design. Edison used Latimer’s knowledge as they and other members of Edison’s team all worked together to make the incandescent Light bulb.

George Washington Carver: Invented alternative methods to prevent soil depletion for white farmers in the South who were being bamboozled by the industrial north.

Garrett Morgan: Invented the Gas Mask.


Madame C.J. Walker: Business Entrepreneur for fashion. She rallied Anti-Lynching protests against the KKK and rewrote her will to give two-thirds of her wealth to charity before her death.

Fredrick McKinley Jones: Made innovations in refrigeration that keeps food from rotting in refrigerators.

Granville T. Woods: Invented safety devices for trains and radio transmissions between the train conductor and the train station.

Benjamin Bannekar: Designed Washington D.C., accurately predicted a solar eclipse from astrology calculations, and invented the Refined Clock in the New World that kept an accurate time.

Odis Boykin: Invented Improved Electrical Resisters, which made possible many future inventions like portable electronics.

Jan Ernst Matzeliger: Invented machinery that made mass-production of shoes possible.

Thomas Jennings: Invented the dry-scouring process which made it easier to clean stains from clothes so people didn’t throw them away after short usage.

Marie Van Brittan Brown: Invented the Home Security system.

Alexander Miles: Invented automatic elevator doors.

Norbert Rillieux: Invented the Multiple-effect evaporator which helped make sugar what it is today.

Sarah Boone: Patent for improvements on the ironing board.

Percy Lavon Julian: Pioneered chemical-synthesis of drugs from plants.

Henry Blair: Invented the seed-planter for corn to make it easier on farmers.

Bessie Blount: Too many to count and in too many areas.

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